On Thursday September 13, we had our first Equity Liasion meeting of the year.
What is Educational Equity? ( taken from the LPS Educational Equity Handbook)
Preparing all students to be citizens committed to:
- recognizing dignitiy and worth of human beings, regardless of economic status and
- affirming the differences and similarities of race ethnicity, culture, religion, sex, age, mental, physical and linguistic abilities.
Our first meeting’s presenter was Chris Webster LPS’s Homeless Outreach Specialist. Yes we have homeless students in Lincoln. Currently we have over 500 documented homeless students in Lincoln, however with only Chris counting, he estimates the real number of homeless students is closer to 1,500 students!!!
The definition of homeless is a person lacking a fixed regular nighttime residence, having been displaced to due to domestic violence or economic hardship. We often think of the people with the homeless signs on the side of the road however that is only 5-7% of the actual homeless population. Over 85% of the homeless population is 6th grade age or younger. Sometimes these are people or kids living in cars, hotels, shelters, grandparents houses, friends couches etc. The key word is fixed. Living in an extended stay hotel or shelter is NOT a Home!
Homeless students can be at ANY school, homeless students can arrive at a school and not have any of the “required” paperwork by law because if their home was destroyed by fired their paperwork was probably destroyed too. Or if mom was being abused should she take the time to get the birth certificates out of the safe while abuser is abusing her??? The student can start school immediately!! There is no waiting period.
Chris Webster’s contact information is Phone- 402-436-1963, 402-326-3440 (c) email email@example.com
Russ Uhing is the director of Student Services for LPS, he is housed at Hawthorne School
The mission of the Student Services Department is to provide services to students in a manner that recognizes both the rights and responsibilities of students and that values each student and encourages appropriate student development.
Here are some facts Russ shared with us.
- 15% of students in LPS attends a school outside of their regular attendance area
- 18 social workers work in 55 school buildings! 3 buildings us points for additional social worker time.
- LPS students with 20+ absences have decreased in the past 3 years Elementary students have decreased 42%!
- Student Services have 2 types of referrals 1) attendance and 2) 5 day suspensions for repeated or serious behavior.
- 55% of expulsions have been of students of color, this is still out of proportion of school population.
- Kindergarten assessment 139/257 students or 54.1% passed the assessment. (July 31-October 15 birthdays) The district will monitor the students that passed to check the effectiveness of the assessment.